Chapter 6: Spinning wheels

The station’s mainframe rumbled internally, and all its portals shook violently. The epicenter was the Standback coffee shop.
Blinding white light, tinged with a hue of electric blue, flashed in through the coffee bar windows at Standback’s, and momentarily blinded the occupants! Standback.cfee gasped, and inverted into his usual slimy ball of green goo. Stavros.dctr spluttered on his drink, and keeled over. But Wilma, level-headed and smart, whipped out her Trusty Sonic Screwdriver ™, and hunkered down into a defensive poise. With her hand shading her eyes, she kept her senses sharp for anything around her.

And then vague mutterings could be heard, booming around the coffee shop, all about Wilma, and above and below and outside.
“Arrgggghhhh …… dad ….. warned me …. file size …… hate Mondays ….”

What was going on??!

******

Somewhere in space…

At the command “engage” the appropriate switches where thrown and Captain Remedy heaved a sigh of relief, which landed in a far corner of the ship’s bridge. The secondary coffee-cup engines flared into life and the ship headed off at a pleasant CD-drive speed, the rest of the fleet bringing up the rear.

That was until a panicked ping from chief engineer Scotty Shorn brought the fleet to a shuddering halt.
“Cap’n, the engines cannae take it. We were never loaded with the 844 isotopic reaction mass and the 845 isotope is generatin’ harmful drains on the resources. We cannae go on until the resource drain has been cleared: We’re all dooooommed!!!”

******

Jordan Basser sat at his medical table trying to decide what to do with himself. Dr. Basser was a tall heavy-set man who sported a goatee that was only seen on the likes of celebrity wrestlers and academics. The wire-rimmed spectacles confirmed him as the latter. Jordan was of course the station doctor but in all honesty he felt more like a mortician.
Although the Trade and Diplomatic meetings had only been going on for the first scheduled afternoon, there had already been one murder. And Dado’s security resources were stretched to the limit investigating the assassination, while liasing with the station’s doctor over the body. The senator from Beetlegoose was 14 feet tall and weighed a metric ton. This alone decreed a lot of resourcing.

“Still…” mused Dado, “what good is a Diplomatic gathering without at least one murder? It goes with the territory … it’s to be expected … y’know, when my grand-daddy was serving on the…”
“Yes, yes, I know a good assassination introduces the ‘spice’ to any mediocre Trade meeting, but I ask you! I’m the doctor for Rars sake! Not the mortician!” snapped Jordan.
“Ahhh, yes, pity the mortician passed away only a few days ago…” remarked Dado.
“It’s strange, don’t you think, how the body of the senator was found slumped across one of the stations computer terminals?” wondered the doctor out loud. “And with a pâté knife sticking out of him…”
“Is it?” questioned Dado. “All I was concerned about was the amount of blood everywhere! Pourin’ all over the machine it was!” The Head of Security curled his lip in distaste. “Y’know, it’s one thing on your own workstation … But when you come visiting, and you bleed all over someone else’s…!!”
“I just can’t wait until they’re gone! I’ve had enough of the lot of them,” moaned Jordan.
“Well only a few more days and this political conference will be done, and we can return to our lovely, normal and above all, quiet, station,” Dado answered, and he inverted with a plop.

Continued… next episode

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